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Fall Harvest: a Fun Way to Get Active as a Family

September 14, 2017 by Normand Richard, Certified Exercise Physiologist

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Fall Harvest: a fun way to get active as a family

The end of summer and beginning of fall are prime time for fruit and vegetable picking. Biting into an apple that was freshly picked and washed from a tree seconds ago is a sensory overload for your taste buds that I must recommend. Other than being super tasty and nutritiously healthy, there are actual physical benefits to fruit picking.

First off, it’s a great way to be active. When out, you’re walking from tree to tree and bush to bush to collect your harvest. This is a great way to avoid the sitting disease and work on your aerobic fitness.

Second, you might be carrying heavier baskets or boxes. Meaning you will be strengthening your muscles. Here’s a handy tip:

  • When lifting a basket from the ground, remember to squat down and keep your lower back straight. Grab the basket with both arms and keep it near your body. Engage your core muscles and let your rear end and leg muscles do the lifting.

There are many places that you can collect your fall harvest:

  • U-Pick farms. At these farms you pick your own fruit and berries and, usually, pay by the weight on your way out. Bushes and trees are lined up and you walk your way down a path collecting as you go. 
  • Wilderness picking - or foraging. I have memories of blueberry picking in new growth forest battling mosquitos and eating more than saving. When picking in the wilderness, remember not to take everything. Check to make sure you are picking the right berries for eating, make sure you are not trespassing, carry the 10 essentials, and do the buddy system if you venturing far away. 
  • Your own back yard. Depending on how big your back yard is, you may be able to have a fruit tree or a few berry bushes. Remember, gardening can count as being physically active.

Wherever you end up going to pick fruits and veggies, it’s a good way to be active as a family, get your steps up and enjoy some delicious BC produce.

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